Here are our top food, wine and beer trends for the new year and where to find them in our Sierra foothills:
1. ARTISAN FOOD
Hand-crafted food sales are booming. Food lovers crave artisan cheese, crusty bread and dry-cured meats. New laws, such as California’s Homemade Food Act, will spur further growth.
• Smokey Ridge Charcuterie
Artisan sausages [...]
AUBURN IS FAMOUS FOR ITS gold mining history. What’s less known, is the city’s leading role in bringing skiing to the Sierra. The Auburn Ski Club was formed in 1928 by resident Wendel Robie. At Cisco Grove, the Auburn Ski Club built ski jumps, ski trails and a lodge (much of it now covered by [...]
OUR REGION OFFERS some of the most flavorful steaks, barbecue and burgers anywhere. There are also abundant supplies of local beef, pork and lamb. California has more certified organic beef cows than any other state.
For do-it-yourself BBQ, try the organic pork ribs from Llano Seco Ranch in Chico, carried at BriarPatch Co-op. For [...]
THE FOOTHILLS ARE A PRIME DESTINATION for historic, walkable towns. “Towns that ooze century-old ambience are strung out along Hwy. 49,” as Lonely Planet wrote in naming Gold Country one of the nation’s top 10 travel destinations for 2012.
Examples include old-town Auburn; downtown Auburn, with its new central square; Grass Valley and Nevada City. The [...]
Enjoyable spots for patio dining as the weather warms up:
IKE’S QUARTER CAFE
Ike’s tree-covered patio with brightly colored flowers is one of the finest outdoor dining spots in the foothills. Ike’s specializes in Creole food, using fresh, organic ingredients.
401 Commercial St., Nevada City
KANE’S FAMILY RESTAURANT
The attractive outdoor patio at Kane’s is a [...]
Soups & Stews: Where to find comfort by the spoonful in the foothills and Sierra:
Not the traditional roux thickened gumbo. It is a hearty soup topped with gingered greens and served with cornbread. Changes daily. Ike’s has been “keeping it Creole” for a decade.
Ike’s Quarter Cafe
401 Commercial St., NC, 265-6138
Chicken Tortilla Soup
THE BURGER IS AN AMERICAN CLASSIC, just like mom and apple pie. Each year, Americans chow down 40 billion of them. Now the scrawny patty that gave rise to the $130 billion-a-year fast food industry is being reinvented as a gourmet entree.
More burgers are being made with organic and local ingredients: grass-fed beef, homemade [...]
THE AMGEN TOUR OF CALIFORNIA IS the largest cycling event in America. From May 15-22, the more than 800-mile race winds through some of California’s most scenic landmarks, including Lake Tahoe and historic gold-rush towns.
The peloton, which includes 19 elite cycling teams, begins at its highest start elevation in six years—6,300 feet above sea [...]
A WINTER JOURNEY UP THE INTERSTATE for skiing, snowboarding or tubing (or west-bound for warmer weather) doesn’t mean you have to compromise when it comes to a road stop for lunch or dinner.
Just like the old Route 66, you can “get your kicks” and enjoy fresh, local and well-prepared food along I-80 between [...]
“A TRATTORIA IS A HOME AWAY FROM home for many Italians,” writes Biba Caggiano in “Trattoria Cooking.” “Eating in a trattoria is like eating with an Italian family.”
Dishes include lasagna, pan-roasted chicken, mussels and fish, pizzas and pastas and charbroiled meats. The atmosphere is cozy, lively and festive.
Restaurants such as Felice a Testaccio [...]